Death by chocolate: Nazi plan to blow Churchill away

Sir Winston Churchill. File photo / Supplied
Sir Winston Churchill. File photo / Supplied

He loved champagne and brandy, roast beef and stilton. But it seems the Nazis were hoping that Winston Churchill had a sweet tooth as well.

German secret agents apparently plotted to assassinate Britain's wartime leader using a bar of exploding chocolate.

Hidden papers suggest they planned to smuggle a bomb disguised as confectionery into the Cabinet War Rooms in 1943.

Covered in a layer of real plain chocolate and wrapped in black paper with gold lettering, the bomb would be packed with enough explosive to kill anyone within several yards. It would be set off when one end was broken.

After British agents tipped off MI5 about the plot, Lord Victor Rothschild, then head of its counter-espionage section, asked illustrator Laurence Fish to produce a poster warning the public of the danger of the chocolate bars.

His letter to Mr Fish, dated May 4, 1943, was written from his war bunker in Parliament Street and marked 'secret' in red letters.

'I wonder if you could do a drawing for me of an explosive slab of chocolate,' he wrote. 'We have received information that the enemy are using pound slabs of chocolate which are made of steel with a very thin covering of real chocolate.'

He added: 'I enclose a very poor sketch done by somebody who has seen one of these. It is wrapped in the usual sort of black paper with gold lettering, the variety being PETERS. Would it be possible for you to do a drawing of this?'

The letter was found by Mr Fish's wife, journalist Jean Bray, after his death three years ago. Mrs Bray, 80, said Lord Rothschild had told her husband that Churchill and his War Cabinet had been the intended targets.

'Thank goodness we discovered what they were up to,' she said from her home in the Cotwolds. 'If the Germans had been successful, the whole outcome of the war could have been quite different.'

- Daily Mail

© Copyright 2014, APN New Zealand Limited

Assembled by: (static) on red akl_a4 at 21 Oct 2014 20:15:45 Processing Time: 422ms